Michael Fitzgerald achieves his goal of introducing the reader to Regular Expressions. He clearly states his intent and his expected audience in the introduction. In addition to the inductive approach to teaching the basics of Regular Expressions to the reader, he takes the opportunity to introduce a plethora of (free) tools. They include but are not limited to the following:
The chapters build upon each other starting with the basics:
- Simple Pattern Matching
- Alternation, Groups and Backreferences
- Character Classes
- Matching Unicode and Other Characters
The lessons learned in the chapters listed above are put to use in Chapter 9, "Marking up a Document with HTML".
In addition to learning the basics of Regular Expressions, the reader gets (re)introduced to Samuel Taylor Coleridge's "The Rime of the Ancyent Marinere". A nice change from the standard, technical examples.
This concise, book is worth the investment if you are new to Regular Expressions.